Should social media be used to employ or discharge an employee? What is social media? Social media is a technology that facilitates the sharing of ideas, thoughts, photos, events, and information through the building of virtual networks and communities. What are some examples of different social media? Social Media can be broken into three different categories. Social networking ranking first, such as Facebook, Linked In, Google Plus (+), Twitter, and Tumblr (microblogging). The second category is photo-sharing through Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest. The last category being video sharing through YouTube, TikTok, Facebook Live, Periscope, and Vimeo. All these social media platforms are used by millions of people. Social media has changed the way we interact as a society and different technologies permit us to communicate more rapidly and to a larger crowd than anyone could ever dream of. Strangers who do not even know you personally can view your daily activities extremely easily because of social media. These strangers could possibly be potential employers seeking employees for unfilled positions. In today’s world, employers are viewing the profiles of many possible applicants’ to decide if they would like to hire or fire the employee. Social media should not be used to employ or discharge a worker because of unintentional bias, personal versus professional lives, and fabrication.
Social media should not be used to employ or discharge a worker because of unintentional bias. One of the most important considerations in employment decisions is compliance. (Bolsu, 2018) When searching online for an employee, it is extremely important to be alert to any bias or prejudice against a secured class. Probing for a candidate’s social media may not appear detrimental, but it is easy to inadvertently gain knowledge beyond what you were initially searching for. With all the information in which social media harbors, it can lead to implied bias. It is extremely important to get an unbiased first impression, and then, if needed, you can follow up based on what has come to your attention.
Social media should not be used to employ or discharge a worker because of their personal versus professional lives. “Back in 2005, 5 percent of American adults used at least one social media platform, according to findings from Pew Research. As of June 2019, 72 percent use social media.” (DeLoatch, 2019) When it comes to social media, employers must be careful that they do not make discriminatory hiring or firing decisions. Social media can be an incredibly positive tool. For example, there are a large number of people who share projects online, which allows you a good view of their body of work. In the hiring process, you can gather a lot of circumstantial information from a candidate’s online presence. The internet can be an amazing way to keep and exhibit your valuable work and portfolios. It is particularly important to facilitate a supportive and accepting culture. (Bolsu, 2018) Private is just that, private and public is public. All in all, the only thing that truly matters is if they can or cannot do the job.
Social media should not be used to employ or discharge a worker because of fabrication. “Social media works well in attracting candidates, but it can be a slippery slope if used to screen them during the hiring process.” Social media accounts should not be taken seriously because information can be disguised, misinterpreted, or fictitious. Some accounts are operated by hackers with someone else’s name, picture, and sometimes even their information. There are scammers who pretend to be someone through social media. There is no real standard on what behavior or post should be regarded as unacceptable by prospective employers. For example, a more conservative boss may take offense to a possible employee whose social media profiles suggest that likes to party and be free or wild when it comes to posting. On the other hand, a progressive hiring manager may not be concerned with someone’s online image as much as their direct work qualifications.